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African American Soldiers That Brought Jazz To Europe


Many Organizations Are Beginning To Invest In Nearshoring


During the last decade, offshoring IT services has become an accepted solution for large and mid-sized enterprises, with the Asia-based outsourcing model dominating the scene.

Even if offshore providers bring organizations significant cost savings, they also come with challenges ranging from time zone discrepancies to cultural differences and language barriers, to name just a few.

In 2017, the total contract value of the information technology outsourcing (ITO) market amounted to 64.3 billion U.S. dollars (according to statista). a trend thats not going anywhere. So many organizations that investigated alternatives to offshoring started to look for partners closer to home. This strategy is called nearshoring. In its essence, nearshoring means teaming up with providers who are located relatively nearby but can still deliver significant cost efficiencies.


1.Cost Savings-A decade ago, hiring candidates from India, China, and the Philippines was all the rage. Today Americans are choosing Latin America

2.Time zone compatibility-Another significant benefit of nearshoring over offshoring is the geographical proximity.

3.Language and cultural similarities- English is commonly spoken in European or Latin American countries

4.Vast talent pool-availability of talented and well-educated professionals

5.Compliance and trade regulations-nearshoring makes collaboration easier because the chances are high that such partnering countries participate in international agreements and follow global standards such as the WTO Information Technology Agreement.



Facebook and Google have been hit with a raft of lawsuits accusing the companies of coercing users into sharing personal data on the first day of Facebook and Google have been hit with a raft of lawsuits accusing the companies of coercing users into sharing personal data on the first day of GDPR enforcement. The lawsuits, are seeking fines against Facebook 3.9 billion and Google 3.7 billion euro (roughly $8.8 billion in dollars),  filed by Austrian privacy activist Max Schrems, a longtime critic of the companies’ data collection practices.

GDPR requires clear consent and justification for any personal data collected from users, and these guidelines have pushed companies across the internet to revise their privacy policies and collection practices. But there is still widespread uncertainty over how European regulators will treat the requirements, and many companies are still unprepared for enforcement. Both Google and Facebook have rolled out new policies and products to comply with GDPR.

Facial Recognition At More Airports


Paris’s Charles de Gaulle airport is currently testing facial recognition technology made by Portuguese firm Vision-Box. KLM is conducting a three-month trial of facial scanning technology at the Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport. Passengers must register at a kiosk near the gate to participate by scanning their passports, boarding passes, and, of course, their faces. Three-dimensional facial recognition scans measure dozens of features such as jawline and distance between the eyes.

European citizens with biometric passports can use special “ePassport” gates at major airports to get through border control, such as these in the UK, which are also open to citizens of other countries like the US and Canada who register in advance

In the United States, Global Entry patrons enter via booths that check people’s identities against biometric data. Private biometric screening company Clear also scans a passenger’s fingerprint or iris with speedy lanes available at 20 airports across the US, and Clear says it plans to expand to two others in the coming weeks. Passengers still have to go through security screening but enter through a dedicated aisle. The company said it has 700,000 members.

Moreover, it’s totally legal for a US Customs and Border Patrol officer to ask you to unlock your phone and hand it over to them. And they can detain you indefinitely if you don’t. Even if you’re an American citizen.

Traveling To Europe & Credit Cards


The latest credit card technology is an embedded computer chip. europe and other countries are already using the new chip cards. The main difference between the old cards and the new cards is that the data is static on a magnetic stripe, but changes with every transaction on an embedded chip card. (this is called dynamic authentication).  Chip cards are more secure than the magnetic stripe cards. If a hacker steals the data from a magnetic stripe card, he has all the information necessary to use that card until the theft is discovered. Chip cards, on the other hand, create a unique transaction code every time the card is used, so stolen transaction data is useless. That’s not to say they are completely safe from fraud. But a security breach is far less likely to occur on a chip-enabled card.Chip cards employ EMV technology which stands for Europay, MasterCard and Visa, the original developers of the smart chip technology. Many U.S. credit cards already contain an embedded EMV chip. However most of these cards require signature validation, not PIN validation. In part, that’s because to make the full transition to chip-and-PIN cards, merchant card readers all need to be replaced with terminals that can handle the new technology.The goal of EMV technology is to thwart fraud and reduce resulting losses for everyone. To encourage full compliance with the new technology, Visa and MasterCard will shift liability for preventable fraud losses to merchants who don’t install the new machines. When traveling outside the U.S. you should request a chip-and-PIN (not chip-and-signature) card from your bank. In some parts of Europe, the transition to chip-and-PIN readers is nearly complete.

Eventually all U.S. credit cards will be chip-enabled. Current cards will be replaced by chip cards as they expire. The transition, which will take several years. Consumers in the U.S. should be able to pay using either a chip-enabled or a magnetic stripe card. In other parts of the world, however, shoppers may have trouble using a magnetic stripe card, particularly at unmanned kiosks or gas pumps.

The Internet Of Things: A New & Upcoming Trend

According to industry research firm IDC, the IoT market is expected to hit $7.1 trillion by 2020,” said John Maddison, vice president of marketing at Fortinet.

Completed in June 2014, the survey asked 1,801 tech-savvy homeowners questions relating to the Internet of Things as it pertains to the connected home. These were the top findings:

The Connected Home is a reality – A majority (61 percent) of all respondents believe that the connected home (a home in which household appliances and home electronics are seamlessly connected to the Internet) is “extremely likely” to become a reality in the next five years. China led the world in this category with more than 84 percent affirming support.

  • In the U.S., 61 percent said that the connected home is extremely likely to happen in the next five years.

Homeowners are concerned about data breaches – A majority of all respondents voiced their concern that a connected appliance could result in a data breach or exposure of sensitive, personal information. Globally, 69 percent said that they were either “extremely concerned” or “somewhat concerned” about this issue.

  • Sixty-eight percent of U.S. respondents said that they were “extremely concerned” or “somewhat concerned.”

Privacy and trust are concerns – When asked about the privacy of collected data, a majority of global respondents stated, “privacy is important to me, and I do not trust how this type of data may be used.” India led the world with this response at 63 percent.

  • Fifty-seven percent in the U.S. agreed with this statement.
  • Data privacy is an extremely sensitive issue – Respondents were also asked how they would feel if a connected home device was secretly or anonymously collecting information about them and sharing it with others. Most (62 percent) answered “completely violated and extremely angry to the point where I would take action.” The strongest responses came from South Africa, Malaysia and the United States.

Skimmers -Becoming Smaller & Thinner



ATM skimmers have become miniscule and  thinner, with an extended battery life. Several miniaturized fraud devices have been pulled from compromised cash machines at various ATMs in Europe so far this year.

According to a new report from the European ATM Security Team (EAST), a novel form of mini-skimmer was reported by one country. Pictured below is a device designed to capture the data stored on an ATM card’s magnetic stripe as the card is inserted into the machine. Most card skimmers sit directly on top of the existing card slot, the newer mini-skimmers fit snugly inside the card reader throat.  These newer skimmers are difficult to detect.

The card skimmer (left) and the hidden camera, disguised as a panel above the PIN pad. Images: EAST.

Mobile-powered skimmers allow thieves to have the stolen card data relayed via text message, meaning they never need to return to the scene of the crime once the skimmer is in place. MP3-based skimmers capture card data as audio waves that specialized software can later convert into card data.

This wafer-thin overlay skimmer includes a high-quality finish.


ATM skimmers are still a problem in Europe, even though practically all cash machines there only accept cards that include so-called “chip & PIN” technology. Chip & PIN, often called EMV (short for Eurocard, MasterCard and Visa), is designed to make cards far more expensive and complicated for thieves to duplicate.

Regrettably, the United States is the last of the G-20 nations that has yet to transition to chip & PIN, which means most ATM cards issued in Europe have a magnetic stripe on them for backwards compatibility when customers travel to this country. Quite Naturally, ATM hackers in Europe will ship the stolen card data over to thieves here in the U.S., who then can encode the stolen card data onto fresh (chipless) cards and pull cash out of the machines here and in Latin America.

Countries where the ATM EMV rollout has been completed most losses have migrated away from Europe and are mainly seen in the USA, Asia-Pacific, and Latin America.

One of the easiest ways to protect yourself from ATM skimmers is to cover the PIN pad when you enter your digits.

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